|Vice Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas|
June 3, 2006 – June 12, 2010
|Preceded by||David Barton|
|Succeeded by||Melinda Fredricks|
April 22, 1969 |
Texas City, Galveston County, Texas, USA
|Spouse(s)||Martha Armstrong M.D.|
|Children||Daniel and Gabriel Armstrong|
|Residence||Dickinson, Galveston County, Texas|
|Alma mater||University of Texas Medical Branch|
Robin Armstrong (born April 22, 1969) is an African-American politician and physician who served as vice chairman of the Republican Party of Texas from 2006 to 2010. He was elected at the state convention held in San Antonio on June 3, 2006, to succeed the term-limited David Barton from Aledo in Parker County west of Fort Worth. Armstrong defeated Internet grassroots organizer, Bobby Eberle of Pearland near Houston.
Armstrong was born in Texas City and reared in nearby La Marque in Galveston County. He has a bachelor's degree in microbiology from Texas A&M University in College Station and a medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. He did his residency in internal medicine. He is on the staff of Mainland Medical Center in Texas City. The hospital is located down the street from his boyhood home. He was the 2006 president of the Galveston County Medical Society.
He graduated from La Marque High School, at which he was a wide receiver on the Cougars football team that played in the 5A state championship in 1987; he also ran the 800 meters and the two-mile relay in track and field.
Armstrong became a Christian during his sophomore year at Texas A&M and has traveled on missionary journeys to Africa and Nicaragua. He has worked in inner city and youth ministry at his church, the Abundant Life Christian Center in La Marque, Texas, where he leads a men’s Bible study group.
On June 14, 2008, Armstrong was elected to a second term as vice chairman at the state Republican convention held in Houston. Tina Benkiser, a Houston attorney, was elected to her third full term as state party chairman. Under Texas law, each major party must at all times have a woman as either its chairman or vice chairman. One of the two positions must be held by a man.
Benkiser resigned as chairman on October 5, 2009, to join the reelection campaign of Governor Rick Perry. Under party rules, the chairman must remain neutral in primary election campaigns. Perry faced a challenge from U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison in the Republican primary held on March 2, 2010. Benkiser was succeeded by Cathie Adams, a conservative activist and Republican national committeewoman from Plano. Adams was elected to fill the position by the Republican State Executive Committee at a special meeting at party headquarters in Austin. She served until the state convention held on June 12, 2010, when she was unseated by Steve Munisteri of Houston.
At the 2006 convention, Texas Republicans affirmed their opposition to affirmative action in their state platform and then chose Armstrong, who is African-American, as vice chairman.
Armstrong has been active in the grassroots of the GOP, as a city chair, an election judge, a precinct chair, a poll watcher, a convention delegate, a Senatorial District Convention chairman, and most recently as the State Republican Executive committeeman for Texas Senate District 11, which covers parts of Galveston, Harris, and Brazoria counties. He is a member of the Galveston Pachyderm Club, and the Texas Eagle Forum. He opposes abortion.
He was reared in a political household. His father, Robert Armstrong, was a member of the nonpartisan La Marque Independent School Board. Armstrong said that he hoped to see the United States stop its "drifting away from the values that made her great." According to Armstrong, the GOP must "expand our conservative base to maintain our party's success in the future. It is not enough to preach to the choir; we must continue to grow by reaching out to people of faith, professional groups, and minorities who have been abandoned by liberalism." Armstrong said that he would work closely with Benkiser to win the "cultural war" and to secure GOP majorities into the future.
In March 2015, Armstrong, along with Jared Woodfill of Harris County and Wade Emmert, chairman of Dallas County, was an unsuccessful candidate for state Republican chairman. The 62-member Republican Executive Committee instead chose Tom Mechler of Amarillo to fill the position on the third secret ballot in a special meeting in Austin. The vacancy occurred when Steve Munisteri stepped down to become a consultant to U.S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. Mechler and Cathie Adams had lost the chairmanship race to Munisteri at the 2010 convention in Dallas. In 2017, Mechler resigned as chairman.
Armstrong and his wife Martha, who is also a medical doctor, have two sons.
- "Republican leader downplaying race".
- "Cathie Adams elected chairman of RPT". Retrieved October 28, 2009.
- "Tom Mechler elected new leader of Texas Republicans". Houston Chronicle. March 8, 2015. Retrieved March 17, 2015.